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Camomander

You’ve probably been to Sunny-on-Sea. In summer, you probably played in the sea, built sandcastles and danced in the waves. When you came you would have seen an ice-cream van, deckchairs and a whole beach to explore. You probably went round the sunny-side museum. It’s that kind of fun, sunny place in the summer.

But in winter it’s a different story. You probably felt the cold, bitter rain falling on your head. You should try being there when the streets are frozen and the snow is falling heavily. You should try being there when the roads are smothered in fog. Few people visit then, with very good reasons too.

My name is Lizzy Lemon and I work at the sea-side museum. I polish the windows, wash the floors and clean the glass cases. I may have well been hired as a cleaner. Most people tell me I must have a terrible job but I quite like it. I have a small room where I sleep with a fireplace (only added a few months ago) and a sleeping bag type of bed. It’s quite lonely at night with no one around. Although in the summer it is packed with guests, in the winter no one is around except a mouse that steals my cheese at night.

While I was reading my newspaper, I heard a tap at the window and a small girl hissed, “Hey, let me in!” I stared at her unsure of what to do. Panting she said, “Hide me!”

Before I continue, I should tell you about one story that happened in our town. It happened so long ago that nobody remembers what day, week or even year. Legends tell of a monster that comes out the sea at night and walks through the alleys killing anyone it meets. Apparently it was a kind of mander called a camomander it has never been seen but has had DNA tested on beaches. It only came out when nobody else is near. It left a set of footprints like a lion on the prowl. It was supposed to howl at night but I believe it was the wind howling. Some say it likes to sneak around, yet others say it wanted food. Some say it sought a lost child who had wondered ashore and stayed on land forever. I have never heard the howling but the wind may have been mistaken from for howling. 

“I saw it,” she says, “close the curtains.”

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